A few female friends gather every new moon to honor our selves and our cycles. Inspired by the book The Red Tent, we have stitched together a collection of various shades of red fabrics which we often hoist to designate our meeting place. We've also tie-dyed dresses for the event... usually we eat well, do some creative project, just relax, and treasure our family and friendships. Contact Debra@Motherhouse.us or call 860-671-7945 if you'd like to join us.

The next new moon falls on April 26. We hope to continue our "Honoring our Foremothers" Book-Making project; a 5X5 accordion book celebrating women who have been personally influential, inspiring in our lives. After sharing stories about how the women we've chosen have uplifted and/or empowered us, we'll compose tributes to them.

For an astrological summary of the new moon's position visit

Monday, December 6, 2010

Red Letter Day for Rachel!

Today we bedecked the house in red in honor of Rachel's first period since Darwin's conception.
Margaret and Darwin played with marbles...
Rachel cooked red Hannukah latkes... Debra made a red cabbage salad....
We feasted...
and re(a)d!
This was the first evening of Tevet, the tenth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this new moon will wax into the Cold Moon or Long Night Moon. This year the full moon falls on the Winter Solstice when nights are at their longest and darkest, and winter cold settles in for the season. It is the natural time for rest and introspection.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

SOUND Asleep

Rachel continues with her goal of softening the sounds in her living room... this time by making a fabric window curtain.
Darwin modeled rest and relaxation.
Margaret creates a backing for her beadwork while helping Jean and Debra
write the collophon for their Dave's Words book
and then helped Darwin get ready for the night's contra dance!
This is the new moon of Kislev the ninth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this new moon will wax into the Beaver or Frosty Moon. It is a time when beavers (and all rodents) are very actively preparing for winter.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Egg Curtons

To soften the sounds
in Rachel's living room
we made wall curtains
out of egg cartons.

Then we watched
Debra's movie:
Dave's Words

of Jean's latest
Art of the Book assignment,
a 5X5inch accordion book
on the topic of words

while Darwin entertained us with ukulele tunes.
This was the first evening of Cheshvan, the eighth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this new moon will wax into the Hunters' or Blood Moon. As we near the end of our pasture season, our cattle are in prime condition for slaughter. Cooler weather also means fewer flies and good temperatures for hanging fresh meat to cure. Now is the time to finish filling the freezer and for smoking meats.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Rosh My Blues Away

In honor of Rosh Hashana, we threw bread in the stream to represent washing away anything we don't want in our lives any more... old emotions, habits, problems that no longer serve us well. Rosh Hashana is one of at least 4 Jewish New Years. Rachel tells us that, that way we get many chances to start over! We also talked about forgiving each other for anything we may have done to hurt the other during the past year.

Back at the house we dipped apples (from trees in Rachel's yard!) in honey and ate them for a sweet year.

This was the first evening of Tishrei, the seventh month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year and the holiday of Rosh Hahanah. In New England, this new moon will wax into the Harvest Moon. Gardeners will literally be reaping the fruits of their labors; drying, freezing, and canning our harvests for winter use.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

American Woman

For August's New Moon, Debra and Nita traveled to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to view an exhibit of the American Woman as perceived by the world from the 1890s through the present. Starting post-Civil War with the corseted "heiress" with exotic hairstyles and foreign-made ball gowns; through the outdoors-athletic (but still corseted!) image of the "Gibson-Girl" look; through flowing tunic Bohemian styles; through the pale frail Flapper style; through WWI and Suffragette movement; through the tough, rough, and sexy Movie Stars of the 30's; right into a changing photo collage of the many individual choices of fashion for today's American Woman including Michelle Obahma in her inaugural gown, and minimally clad swim champions.

Looking at the garb for riding sidesaddle and swimming at the turn of the nineteenth century, we wondered at the torturous discomfort and actual physical danger women endure (and enforce among themselves) in order to maintain a "respectable" image in the eyes of men. Even with our relative economic, political, and sexual freedom of today, how do these attitudes continue to affect our lives? It was interesting to note that until very recently, the "American Woman" has been considered to be white, of European descent, and quite wealthy.

The August new moon was the beginning of
Elul, the sixth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this new moon will wax into the Grain or Green Corn Moon. We are already enjoying a bountiful harvest of juicy sweet corn and fresh tomatoes!
Please visit Motherhouse.us to learn of other gatherings.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Lunar Essence

This month,we celebrated the "birth" of the Hay-Makers Moon with another picnic at Local Farm. Rachel and Darwin went to a Wolfe Clan reunion. Alicia used the dark phase of the moon to draw out the essence of morning glory to add to her growing collection of flower essences. For Alicia, creating flower essences is an intuitive process, connecting her to Life. She plucks a single blossom that "speaks to her," puts it in a clear glass container, pours fresh water over it and sets it out under the night sky. She brought by some of the resulting "stock" the next day us to sip... To preserve her essences for later use, she mixes 1 part brandy to 1 part essence and only uses a few drops at a time for its subtle healing properties.
This year, the July new moon coincided with a full solar eclipse. It was the first evening of Av, the fifth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this new moon waxes into the Hay Moon or Thunder Moon. Farmers will be mowing, raking, and baling hay in the strong drying days of sun... then hurrying to get it stored under cover before one of the many thundershowers of this time of year.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Chickened Out

After a full day of EGGS-periencing Chickens ala Motherhouse Old Style Life-Skills Series Workshops, we gathered for an early supper in the cowshed at Local Farm.
The June 12 new moon marked the first evening of Tammuz, the forth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this moon will wax into the Strawberry Moon or Honey Moon. We can expect to find strawberries ripening on their low three leafleted plants. Beekeepers will be extra vigilant for swarms as their hives burst with nectar-gathering activity.
Please visit Motherhouse.us to learn of other gatherings.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

What A Card!

Darwin and Rachel hostessed. Darwin showed us it's not (c)hard...
Bea showed how to fill our teeth with the wool thing.
Margaret wooly showed us how to comb.
Debra and Nancy spun yarns.
We were all wool hungry for a yummy lunch!
The May 15 new moon marked the first evening of Sivan, the third month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England, this moon will wax into the Milk Moon or Frog Moon. For those of us with recently freshened goats or cows, we will experience a flood of milk as our animals are turned out onto fresh pasture grass. We'll watch and listen for frogs singing love songs to their mates by the light of this moon.
Please visit Motherhouse.us to learn of other gatherings.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Gather Round

Margaret hostessed the April New Moon in the Motherhouse yurt. What a delightful vision greeted me as I came down the drive toward the yurt's open door... young children exploring nearby as the older folk chatted, carded wool and practiced using drop spindles. The circular yurt walls seemed to embrace us all as we shared our thoughts and visions of healthful education. We finished off with a lunch of fresh garden greens, home-made cheese, and (for some) Mother's Milk!The April 14 New Moon started the first evening of Iyar, the second month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. In New England this moon waxes into the Egg Moon or Yellow Moon. We'll watch for a flurry of nesting activity and even increased egg production in the hen house! Dandelions, marsh marigolds, daffodils, and a whole slew of yellow blossoms will be opening to usher in warmer weather!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Spinning in Place

Rachel hopes to use her sheep's wool to knit or crochet soakers or "butt sweaters" for Darwin, so this New Moon we gathered at Debra's to try our hands at spinning. Janet Lynn of the Wheel Thing Spinning Supply House in Lakeville, CT, generously donated several drop spindles for us to use. Margaret carded wool. Jean read and reread directions; especially the line exhorting us to "Try and try and try." Debra and Rachel tried and tried and tried...
After lunch, we looked at hand-made books and a photobook of Debra and Margaret's trip to San Francisco designed by Margaret's brother Zach. We sang songs, Jean played the piano, and Darwin played with finger puppets.

Then Rachel pulled out the materials for making our own drop spindles out of old CDs, dowels, and plumbing supplies. The directions were also a suggestion from Janet. Debra finished one and found it a REALLY smooth spin. Join with more wool works at this Saturday's Mother/Daughter retreat! Contact Debra@Motherhouse.us to register.

The March 15th new moon began the first day of Nisan, the first month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year in which they celebrate Passover. As a holiday commemorating freedom, this is an excellent time to reflect on freeing ourselves from rigid habits and harmful thought-patterns. (For a woman-centered version of the thought-provoking 49 day ritual called "counting the Omer" see Ritualwell.org.) In New England this moon will wax into the Sap Moon or Worm Moon. We'll watch for sweet and tasty "sapsicles" made by freezing trickling sap from broken maple twigs. Warming soil will hearken earthworms to the surface and we can expect to observe many worm castings in the coming weeks as well. As the 2nd full moon in March, it will also be the only "Blue Moon" in 2010.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Tugging at our Heart Strings

Margaret and Debra paused in their site-seeing tour of San Francisco on a rock overlooking the Pacific Ocean to honor the Valentines Day New Moon. Watching the waves roll and crash on the rocky beach below, we wondered at the power of the moon's pull.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Come to the Table

Jean set a beautiful table complete with new moon gift towels at our places,
and served us delicious turkey chili
After we cleared off the empty dishes, she spread the table with papers, ribbons, and other goodies for making valentines
Darwin and lovey bear showed us what valentine's day is all about.